Non-religious North Carolina mayor takes his oath while holding a copy of the Constitution

When Franklin, North Carolina mayor Bob Scott was sworn into his second term this week, the self-identified Humanist decided to honor his belief in the Separation of Church and State. Scott was not sworn in on the bible, but instead took his oath on a copy of the Constitution.

When Franklin, North Carolina mayor Bob Scott was sworn into his second term this week, the self-identified Humanist decided to honor his belief in the Separation of Church and State. Scott was not sworn in on the bible, but instead took his oath on a copy of the Constitution.

Scott said that he “decided to take my oath holding a copy of the Constitution because there is so much controversy surrounding separation of church and state. I am a firm believer in keeping religion and government separate.”

“Many of the old ways of doing things are gone,” he added. “The attitudes I expect to never hear expressed are ‘we ain’t never done it that way before,’ or ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it,’ or ‘we have always done it this way.’ I want to make sure that everyone on this board is always free to say ‘let’s try it,’ or ‘here’s a new way to think or do something.’”

After a successful first term, Mayor Scott promised to bring change and innovation to the town of 3,800 on his second time around.

[Patheos] Featured image via Twitter



  1. Avatar


    December 11, 2015 at 3:31 am

    Good on this guy! How about that! Someone who is not a redneck coming from North Carolina, too!

  2. Avatar

    Barbara Abu-Odeh

    December 11, 2015 at 4:26 am

    good for him!!!!!!!!

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    Morgan Ravenwood

    December 11, 2015 at 8:35 am

    HOORAY for Mayor Scott! I would like to see ALL elected officials swear ONLY on the Constitution!

  4. Avatar


    December 11, 2015 at 10:05 am

    There is hope after all!

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    Bonnie Pickartz

    December 11, 2015 at 10:24 am

    Way to go, Mayor Bob! One of the best people I’ve ever had the honor to call a friend!

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    JD Hall

    December 11, 2015 at 11:02 am

    Bob Scott, you are now officially one of my heroes.

    I did 20 years in the military and when reenlisting, always “affirmed” instead of swearing, and substituted, “So help me,” for “So help me, God.”

    You stayed true to YOUR core beliefs which are every bit as sacrosanct as THEIRS. You’re welcome at my table any time.

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    Crystal Lynn Barcklay

    December 11, 2015 at 1:41 pm

    I think every political office holder should take there oath on the constitution not on a religious book.

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    December 11, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    I hope that one day soon this will be the NORM in the United States, and across the globe!

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    December 11, 2015 at 4:05 pm

    so much more appropriate. his duty is to everyone, not to a religion or religious people exclusively.

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    Martino Whelan

    December 11, 2015 at 5:40 pm

    Well Done that man, nice to see common sense prevail over religious dogma, after all he is swearing an oath to the people , to uphold his office and the constitution it was founded on..should be made compulsory to all public offices…

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    December 11, 2015 at 6:14 pm

    Too bad our local officials can’t be so honest!

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    No rednecks around here

    December 11, 2015 at 7:40 pm

    Um,I’m from North Carolina, born and raised. Actually there are more people here from up north than from NC. Way to stereotype. Go a little farther northwest or south…

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    Stuart Snow

    December 11, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    I’ll bet that he’s a Unitarian.

  14. Avatar

    Carole Hoffman Howell

    December 12, 2015 at 6:21 am

    There are reasonable peope here…just don’t get the press the others do.

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    James Smith

    December 12, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Checking in from NC, there’s at least two of us here that agree in seperation of church and state. Thank you Mister Mayor

  16. Avatar

    Rachael Ramsey

    December 12, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    This is the way it should be done. Congratulations for having the courage to represent your convictions.

  17. Avatar

    Pam Miller

    December 13, 2015 at 6:40 pm

    Great Story – definitely a step in a positive direction.

  18. Avatar


    December 13, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    You stole my comment!!! I completely agree.

  19. Avatar


    December 14, 2015 at 1:47 am

    Thank you Bob Scott. That was a very important point you made.I hope more people do the same.

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    A. Graham

    December 14, 2015 at 3:24 am

    Only if they read and *understand* it first, I think.

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    December 14, 2015 at 5:52 am

    AND my hometown new mayor who is 29yrs old omitted from his swearing in oath any reference to God! He is a Unitarian and I as a 68 y o woman am THRILLED .

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    December 14, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    There are many intelligent & thoughtful people in the deep South. They tend to be mannerly & soft spoken. Therefore people from other regions seldom here about them. Too bad.

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    Gary Walker

    December 14, 2015 at 11:48 pm

    This is excellent news. Religion is for the religious and affirming one’s duty using the symbol of the Consitution is a step forward. I am tired of all the religious-inspired conflict and hatred here and abroad so perhaps this tiny town will make others think.

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    Bob Young

    January 5, 2016 at 4:44 pm

    Nation is in the shape it is in because we r getting from founding fathers faith in God and said this country based on Christian principles . Bible prophecy is coming true God help us

  25. Avatar


    January 18, 2016 at 6:02 pm

    God sees everything everyone posted.

  26. Avatar

    Mz Nancy Skinner

    January 18, 2016 at 8:25 pm

    That’s why our country is falling apart!
    Keep throwing God out & this country will no longer be anywhere near a great country! It’s sad to me that these ppl only think money should be their god!

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